Police in Portland, Maine have arrested and charged a 28-year old Norwegian for threatening to kill police. According to friends and acquaintances in Norway the man has Asberger syndrome.
Several people said that he has been diagnosed with a form of autism spectrum disorder, for several years. They are shocked by the accusations, and one of them describes him as “the most peaceful person they have ever known,” according to the newspaper Portland Press Herald.
The Norwegian, who according to a newspaper from Bergen, was interested in film and cartoons, but he never showed interest in either politics or violence.
– He had no reason to do such a thing. It makes no sense. I would say that he definitely is not responsible for this, and he is a person who could never have done something like that, says a friend who has known the 28-year-old for seven to eight years, to the newspaper.
The 28-year-old made threats via email and Twitter, police said. He was not armed and did not resist when he was arrested at a hotel in Portland Wednesday afternoon.
According to police the Norwegian man came to the United States in late July along with a family member. He was scheduled to leave the country Thursday. The family did not know about the threats.
The man has no comment, according to the news agency .
According Portland Press Herald threats were made to “shoot and kill” police officers.
The police took the threat seriously and checked a parking basement for explosives and evacuated a courthouse.
The man published three threat messages on Twitter, all with the slogan “Black Lives Matter”. The account of the man was later shut down by Twitter. He also sent an email with threats to the police, other security authorities and newspaper Portland Press Herald.
“We will make our Sig Sauer MCX. 223-caliber rifles ready, and very soon my partners will head to Portland Police Department at 109 Middle St., “said the email.
He also gave the room number and the hotel he was staying at, and he urged police to come and arrest him.
The weapon mentioned is the same type that was used by the man who shot and killed 49 people at a gay club in Orlando in June.
Police Chief Michael Sauschuck said during a press conference that the Norwegian has acted alone, despite the fact that he wrote that he and “his partners” would come with guns.
The Norwegian embassy in Washington says they usually do not comment on criminal incidents where Norwegians are involved.
The Foreign Ministry on Thursday was not familiar with the matter, and did not want to comment on the events according to NTB.
The police takes these threats very seriously after a total of eight police officers were shot and killed in Dallas and Baton Rouge in July. The attackers were in both cases black men and the shootings came after police killings of black men in Baton Rouge and Minnesota, which led to riots in several places in the country.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today